Monday, 25 February 2013

Bakewell Tart

So! This Friday a friend and I spent a long time in the kitchen. The oven was on for 14 hours. We had a stall at a Market over here and I made lots of sweet things, she made all the savoury stuff. It was a really great experience - we got to learn a lot about having a stall and what sorts of things we need to prepare and take along with us. Logistics and that. We even got business cards printed up! 'Crumbs in Berlin' - so it sort of matches what I have here. Del made quiches and tasty roasted veg topped bread, and I made brownies, gingerbread, carrot cake, cupcakes (vanilla, chai and ganache topped orange drizzle), scones, a delicious honey and orange blossom cake and some bakewell tarts. It went really well and hopefully we can do some more!
Here's the recipe for the bakewell. No real pictures, but I can always make it again!

for the pastry
125g plain flour
75g cold butter, diced
20g vanilla sugar
1 egg yolk
some iced water

for the almond filling
raspberry jam
150g butter, sofened
150g sugar
150g ground almonds
3 eggs, beaten
the zest of one lemon
1/2 tsp almond extract
icing sugar
sugar nibs

- make the pastry. Rub the butter in to the flour. When it resembles breadcrumbs, stir in the sugar then tip in the egg yolk and a tablespoon of water. Mix together with a round ended knife and add more water as needed until a dryish dough is formed. Bring together in to a ball. Knead briefly then wrap up and rest in the fridge for half an hour. 
- preheat the oven to gas 4. Roll out the dough and lay it in a tart tin. Cover with baking paper and fill with baking beans/rice and bake for 12 mins. Take out, remove the insides and bake again for 5.
-whilst that's in the oven, make the delicious filling. Cream together the butter and sugar. Add the eggs gradually and then fold in the almopnds, zest and extract. 
-spread a good layer of jam on to the pastry and then spoon the mix on top, spreading evenly. Bake for around 20 minutes until slightly risen and golden.
Make a simple water icing and drizzle on the top, then sprinkle with sugar nibs for extra crunch!

Mini Bakewell tarts!

Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Buttermilk Waffles

AND they're heart shaped. So work well for heart day! <3

Yesterday was Shrove Tuesday. My flatmate and I were both busy with various bits and pieces, and as we both had a lazy lie in the next day, we opted in stead for Waffle Wednesday!
It was nice: Tea, TV, waffles, What more could you want?
I was equally excited to get the waffle iron out and do some practice runs for the food market we are both selling at in a few weekend's time, and that I could again whip out my German waffle and pancake book, attempt some translation and hope for the best.
Of course I didn't have all the relevant ingredients for any of the recipes, so I just sort of mixed and matched and did what I thought would be tasty.
By the way, this made enough to feed two hungry (and greedy) girls.

105g flour
1 tsp baking powder
1tsp bicarbonate of soda
a pinch of salt
1 tablespoon vanilla sugar
40g ground almonds
200ml buttermilk
15g butter, melted and cooled
1 egg, separated
sugar nibs/icing sugar to dust
strawberries/sliced banana
honey and yogurt

-first thing's first - stick the waffle iron on and get yourself a couple of bowls ready
- in a large bowl stir together all the dry ingredients.
- in another bowl, mix together the butter, buttermilk and egg yolk. Whisk together to combine.
-in yet another bowl, whisk up the egg white until nice and fluffy and a bit stiff. Mix the milky-buttery stuff in to the floury bowl and whisk. Then fold in the egg white.
-spoon 1/4 of the mixture in to the waffle iron, close the lid and cook on high for about 4 minutes until brown and cooked through. Slice up/layer with fruit, dollop on the yogurt and drizzle with honey. A dusting of sugar wouldn't go amiss either.

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Honey, Lime and Ginger Cheesecake

Not the prettiest, but it was darn tasty!
I have recently joined up with a cooking community called Kitchen Surfing! It looks like it could be a lot of fun. Basically it means that if someone likes the look of the food I make (mostly curries) and the cakes I bake, then they could hire me to come and cook in their home! Fun! There also seems to be market selling opportunities too. In any case, this links in to this post as I had to cook some dishes to take to an interview/tasting to see what sort of things I make. This cheesecake was one of them. 

I love cheesecake and usually stick to my chai baked one, but this time wanted to have the flavours reflect the wintery months. Honey, lime and ginger was the winning combination as this is what you need when you start to feel a bit poorly - and they are a tasty trio.
Topped with honey and fresh ginger syrup for extra oomph.

325g butter keks smashed to within an inch of their lives
30g oats
150g butter, melted
2 1/2 tblsp ground ginger

500g cream cheese(room temp)
100g sugar
100g honey
4 eggs (room temp)
250ml cream(room temp)
zest of 2 limes and the juice of one
1tsp vanilla extract
2 tblsp plain flour

thumb sized piece of ginger
2 tblsp honey

-Preheat the oven to gas mark 4. Line a loose bottomed, deep, round tin with paper and set aside.
-Make the buttery biscuit base: Pour the butter in to the smashed biscuits, oats and ginger powder and mix well. Tip in to the tin and press down firmly so it is tightly packed. Cover and refrigerate until needed.
-beat the cream cheese then add in the sugar and beat for a few minutes. Add in the honey and cream and whisk together until smooth.
-Add the eggs, zest, juice and vanilla and carefully whisk in. Sieve the flour over the top and gently fold. Try not to incorporate too mach air. Carefully bang the bowl on the kitchen side to remove large air bubbles.
- pour on to the prepared biscuit base. Bake for around an hour. It should rise up, nice and puffy, slightly brown around the edges and still have a wobble in the center. After an hour, turn off the oven and leave inside. Then after another hour, open the door and leave it for another hour. So 3 hours in total. You basically want to let it cool down as slowly as possible.
-to make the syrup, grate the ginger, squeeze the juice in to a small pan and put the ginger in too. Add the honey and a little water. Boil for a few minutes till thickened. Cool and pour over the cooled cheesecake!
Slice and munch.

Monday, 11 February 2013

Gooey Chocolate and Cardamom Tart

It cracked a bit, but that just means the top's all crispy!

I realised that it has been quite a while since I baked anything pastry based. I needed to make a few things today for a little thing I have going on tomorrow, and decided a cross between a tart and a brownie would be perfect! It slices, looks nice on a plate and will taste good, because let's face it - brownies always do. I added in a little cardamom for a little zing and it worked very well indeed.

For the pastry:
175g plain flour
85g cold butter, diced
1 tblsp vanilla sugar
1 egg yolk
up to 5 tblsp iced water

For the gooey chocolate filling:
125g butter, diced
160g dark chocolate (I used an equal mixture of 81% and 65%)
6 cardamom pods - just the seeds, crushed
60g plain flour
40g cocoa powder
210g sugar
3 eggs

- First things first, make the pastry. Using your fingertips rub the butter in to the flour and sugar until it resembles breadcrumbs. Then add in the egg yolk and 2 tblsp of the cold water and mix in with a round-ended knife. Keep adding water, bit by bit until the dough starts to come together - but is not too wet. Tip on to a board, knead very lightly to bring together, wrap in cling film and pop in the fridge for 30 mins.
- preheat the oven to gas 6. Roll out the pastry and use it to line a 25cm tart tin. Prick a few holes all over, cover in baking paper, fill with baking beans or raw rice and blind bake for 10 mins. Remove the beans and paper, and pop back in for another 10, remove and then set the oven to gas 4.
- for the filling, set a metal bowl over a pan of simmering water and melt the butter and chocolate together. Once silky, stir in the cardamom and set aside. 
- set another metal bowl over the same pan and place the eggs and sugar inside. Whisk with electric beaters on high until it pale, thick, creamy and tripled in size (you can do this without the additional heat but it would take a wee bit longer).
- Pour the chocolate in to the eggs and fold in with a large metal spoon. Sift the dry ingredients over the top and fold in until just combined.
-pour this in to your prepared pastry case, place in the oven and bake for 20 minutes (remember to turn the oven down to 4 though!).
- It's ready when there is still a slight wobble in the middle. This will set as it cools. Slice and enjoy with a cup of chai or cardamom tea!